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Manufacturing a Key Driver in March

3,100 jobs gained in the last two months

Minnesota’s unemployment rate for March was a steady 3.2 percent as employers added 2,900 jobs.

Job cuts in February were revised from 1,300 jobs lost to 200 jobs lost. Over the past year, the state has gained 21,250 jobs, an increase of 0.7 percent.

Sector details:

• Manufacturing has been one of the state’s key economic drivers so far this year, gaining 3,100 jobs in the last two months. The sector is growing at a healthy pace during a period when employers in manufacturing – and most other industries – are competing for workers. Manufacturing continues an impressive upward trend in both adjusted over-the-month as well as unadjusted over-the-year growth. Check the Carver County manufacturing numbers below.

• Leisure and hospitality lost 100 jobs, representing stagnant growth that mirrors the US over-the-month growth rate. While this might be a disappointment, Minnesota didn’t fare worse than the national average. Leisure and hospitality had impressive over-the-month growth in January and February, so no immediate concern.

• Education and health services gained 800 jobs for a growth rate of 0.1%, equal to the US growth rate. Educational Services (+300) and Health Care and Social Assistance (+500) gained jobs. Education and health services just reversed a two-month over-the-month declining trend.

Minnesota continues to experience a tight labor market. According to unofficial estimates, the 12-month moving average rate for black Minnesotans fell from an historic low of 7.4 percent in January to 7.0 percent in March. The unemployment rate for Hispanics fell from 3.3 percent to 3.1 percent over the month. Although the labor market has led to improved job opportunities for some, there remains room for improvement in the employment situation for people of color.

Here are the numbers.

Metropolitan Statistical Areas

All regions gained jobs in the past 12 months:

• Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA (up 0.8 percent)

• Duluth-Superior MSA (up 1.0 percent)

• Rochester MSA (up 0.1 percent)

• St. Cloud MSA (up 0.6 percent)

• Mankato MSA (up 2.2 percent)

February Statistical Snapshot

Highlights from the February statistical snapshot:

• 1-year growth in employment was 0.8 percent, ranking 36th nationwide. (US rate, 1.7 percent)

• Minnesota’s job creation since January 2011 was 287,600 or 10.8 percent increase. (US growth rate, 13.2 percent)

• Minnesota’s labor force participation rate was 70.2 percent, ranking second highest nationwide. (US rate, 63.0 percent)

• Minnesota’s long-term unemployment rate (>27 weeks) was 14.2 percent, compared to 20.7 percent nationwide.

• Minnesota’s per capita income in 2017 was $53,043, ranking 15th highest. The national average was $50,392.

• Minnesota’s veteran’s unemployment rate was 5.1 percent in 2017, ranking 46th. The national rate was 3.7 percent.

Manufacturing in Carver County is Significant and Diverse

Carver County – Minnesota’s second-smallest county by total land area – can be overshadowed by its neighbors to the east, Hennepin and Scott counties. But it has a few surprises of its own.

According to the Minnesota State Demographic Center, Carver County had a population of 110,621 people in 2016, making it Minnesota’s 11th most-populated county. And Carver County is growing rapidly. Between annual 2006 and 2016, the last decade of available data, Carver County’s total population ballooned by 16.7 percent, or about three times faster than total state growth.

Manufacturing is an industry force. Carver County had 2,405 establishments supplying 39,332 total covered jobs (3rd QTR, 2017) – and nearly one-quarter of these jobs were in manufacturing. To compare, manufacturing makes up about 11 percent of Minnesota’s total employment. The average annual wage for manufacturing jobs at $65,208, was about 29 percent higher than the average annual wage for the total of all jobs in the county, at $50,492. Two-thirds of Carver County’s manufacturing employment was within Computer and Electronic Product Manufacturing, Miscellaneous Manufacturing, Chemical Manufacturing, and Food Manufacturing. See the Metro Region’s Local Look.



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